Tuesday, June 28, 2011

This Is How I Press My Seams Open

When I make my bags, I put a lot of work into pressing my seams open. I realised very early on that if your seams don't look well-pressed, your bags will end up looking homemade instead of handmade.

Most of the time I press my seams open. When my fabric is too bulky, I will press my seams to one side.

I don't know how other sewers press their seams open but today I'll show you how I do mine. I have 2 ways of doing it. The second method avoids pressing on the right side of the fabric.

First method:

Without opening the seams, press on the sewn seams for both sides of the fabric. (wrong side of fabric only)


Next, observe that the seams naturally fall towards one side of the fabric.


From the right side of the fabric, use your hands to spread open the 2 pieces of fabric still allowing the seams to fall naturally to one side. Press firmly on the seams to get a crisp seam.


Turn fabric to the wrong side and you will see that the seams are pressed towards one side.


Spread open the seams and use the iron to press heavily on the seams. You may have to do it more than once to get the seams to lie flat.


Turn to the right side and press on the seam line.


Your seam line looks good and there are no creases. For side seams, I would be happy with this result. But if this was the top of a bag and you need to topstitch the edge, pressing on the folded edge first would give you a nice crisp look.

Second Method:
If for some reason you don't want to use your iron on the right side of the farbic, try this method.


Without opening the seams, press on the sewn seams for both sides of the fabric. (wrong side of fabric only)


Next, observe that the seams naturally fall towards one side of the fabric. (towards red fabric)


Do this from wrong side of fabric. While you press the iron along the seams, tug gently at the red fabric. This is to avoid getting creases.


Spread open the seams and use the iron to press heavily on the seams. You will definitely have to do it more than once to get the seams to lie flat.


Your seam line looks good and there are no creases. For side seams, I would be happy with this result. But if this was the top of a bag and you need to topstitch the edge, pressing on the folded edge first would give you a nice crisp look. Iron over a hanky/press cloth if you really must avoid direct contact between iron and right side of fabric. Alternatively, finger pressing works as well.

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I don't use steam when I press seams open. I usually interface my fabric and the steam would cause chaos to my interfacing.

Should you have any other way to press bag seams open do share them with me.

Lastly, I've just noticed how disgusting my ironing board cover is. Time for a change!

1 comments:

tamdoll said...

Thanks for the tips! I've been ironing a lot lately as I'm working on a bag.. have to remember to turn off the steam once my interfacing is set, too.

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